AMHERST, Mass. - Sophomore forward Oliver Chau netted his first goal of the season 3:04 into overtime to lift No. 4 University of Massachusetts hockey to a 3-2 win over No. 18 Princeton at the Mullins Center on Saturday night. The victory extends the Minutemen's winning streak to a nation's-best eight straight and ties the program record for consecutive wins. The Tigers fall to 3-4-1 overall following the loss.
"We deserved to win tonight," said UMass head coach Greg Carvel. "It came harder than we wanted it to. It was one of those games where we probably could have scored five or six goals and I felt like Princeton was pretty opportunistic. Whenever we made a mistake, they were creating scoring chances. Winning in a different way for our group, to gut it out and win overtime and I'm very happy for Oliver Chau. We needed him to get off the off the schneid and score a goal. That's as good a 60 minutes as we've played this year, so, I'm very happy with the victory."
UMass ended the opening period with an offensive flurry. Freshman Bobby Kaiser carried the puck into the Princeton zone off a feed from Ty Farmer and Matt Murray and fired a shot past Ryan Ferland 18:48 into the first.
Just 26 seconds later, sophomore Cale Makar increased the lead to 2-0, stripping a Tigers' defender of the puck and skating in alone on Ferland to net his sixth of the season.
Princeton struck back, though, in the second period. Luke Keenan finished off a pass from Max Veronneau and Mike Ufberg on the rush at 4:49.
The Tigers then leveled things at 2-2 after Veronneau found his way in behind the UMass defense and potted the equalizer from Ryan Kuffner and Jackson Cressey at 17:53.
Despite a host of scoring chances and extended time in the Princeton zone for the Minutemen in the third, the teams remained level at 2-2 through 60 minutes.
UMass continued to pressure in the extra frame and sophomore Mario Ferraro ultimately found Chau at the top of the crease to tap in the game winner.
The Minutemen finished the night with a 46-25 shot advantage, while both teams were scoreless on the power play, UMass 0-for-4 and the Tigers 0-for-2.
Netminder Matt Murray improved to 8-0-0 on the year after making 23 saves and Ferland finished with 43 stops for Princeton.
The Minutemen resume Hockey East play next Friday, Nov. 30, when the squad will play host to UConn at 7 p.m. in the Mullins Center.